Dos and Don'ts: Dealing with Dementia
By Holly Klamer
Dementia is a condition that affects a person’s memory, leading to a decline in cognition, memory and thinking skills. Persons who are living with dementia require specialized care and often end up needing full-time assistance depending on the severity of the condition. Looking for Dementia care facilities near me? Ensure that you research well so as to be sure you find a care facility that suits your needs. Understanding how to best care for a person with dementia might become difficult, especially for the family members. Here are some of the Dos and Don'ts for dealing with Dementia that you need to have at your fingertips...
- Create More Time to Be with Dementia Patient
Do ensure that you are readily available to step in for the person living with Dementia. Often, you will find that the patient will forget the things they were doing. In this regard, you will be required to support them complete the daily tasks. As a family member, creating more time for the person living with dementia is a show of affection. The dementia patient might not ask for assistance even when it's clear they need to be assisted. Therefore, spending more time with the patient is important to ensure you help when needed.
- Don’t React to Aggressive Behavior
Hostile speech is common in persons living with dementia. In some cases, hostility is seen in the way they do things. The best thing a caregiver can do for a dementia patient is to avoid reacting back. Therefore, when the patient replies back to you in an unfriendly tone, don’t take offense. Instead, give the patient time to calm down and then later approach him or her in a friendly tone. Understand what made the patient feel upset and avoid it next time you are addressing the patient.
- Do use Therapeutic Lies to Take Charge of the Situation
The caregivers handling dementia cases are sometimes forced to apply therapeutic lies. This is so as to be able to keep the dementia patient from experiencing mental anguish or becoming upset. For the family members, it feels awkward lying to your seniors, but when it comes to dementia care, this is sometimes inevitable.
Do take charge of the situation by finding a suitable therapeutic lie to avoid a worse situation. For example, a person with dementia might forget that their child passed on years ago. Therefore, they keep asking where he/she is. A caregiver can answer that the son or daughter is using the bathroom. This helps avoid opening up wounds when he or she learns the person is dead.
- Don’t Let your Stress Get Out of Control
It is important that the caregivers take good care of themselves. This is by attending counseling sessions, taking a day off work to do something different, and exercising regularly to let go the accumulated stress. Find time to eat well, and sleep well at night. In most cases, family members become stressed and go into depression when they see what has happened to their loved one. However, learn to accept the situation and take good care of yourself.
These are some of the important things to have in mind when dealing with Dementia. Remember that there are specialized dementia care facilities where your loved one can find the best care.